Saturday, October 19, 2013

College FB '13 Dread News - Week 7

One of the most disappointing games for Baylor during Robert Griffin III's Heisman Trophy winning 2011 season was the Week 5 road game against Kansas State in which the Bears, off to a hot start not too dissimilar from the way they've started this season, blew a 9-point lead in the 4th quarter and lost 36-35. The biggest disappointment for Kansas State in their Big 12 championship winning 2012 season came in Week 12, when the Wildcats, 10-0 and ranked #2 in the nation, made the trip to Waco and laid an egg, getting clobbered 52-24 by Baylor, which entered the game with a 4-5 record. So for this year's meeting between Baylor and K-State - back in Manhattan - you had the unusual case of both teams seeking redemption. It looked like the outcome was going to be a repeat of the 2011 game. But this time, after the Bears blew a 21-10 halftime lead, they regained momentum, regained the lead, and held on to win 35-25.
I try to never miss an LSU-Florida game, but Baylor against K-State was the game I most wanted to see this week - even if there weren't many players with dreads in uniform. It's just that I've become a really big fan of Tevin Reese (photo above), and also I wanted to see how the Bears' explosive offense would fare playing on the road for the first time.

Kansas State isn't nearly as good as they were last year, but this still figured to be a serious test for Baylor because they had never won there before, going 0-4 at the Little Apple since the Big 8 merged with the SWC. The total yards were almost dead even. K-State finished with 445, of which 327 were on the ground; while Baylor gained 451 yards, with 342 of those coming via the pass on just 13 completions. The Wildcats did a lot of things they wanted to, holding an 80-59 edge in plays and dominating time of possession (39:24-20:36). But after taking a 25-21 lead, they made too many mistakes, eventually allowing Baylor to escape with the victory.  

It may not be rule #1 in the handbook for being a WR, but it certainly ranks near the top: You can't drop the ball on 3rd down. And after Reese broke that rule early in the 2nd quarter, there was a shot of the senior WR on the bench hanging his head - no doubt disappointed because he knows he's too good of a player to make a mistake like that and let the team down. His drop of a pass on 3rd and 9 (he started to run before securing the ball) meant the Bears would fail to score for the 2nd consecutive possession - unheard of during their 4-0 start, in which they scored at least 4 TD in the 1st quarter of all 4 games. But Tevin wasn't down for long. On the 2nd play of the Bears' next possession he got behind the K-State secondary, adjusted to the pass without breaking stride, made the catch and took it 93 yards to the house (photo below) to give Baylor a 14-7 lead. Now that's more like it! It was the 2nd longest TD reception in Baylor history.
After taking a 21-10 lead into the locker room, the Bears came out of the locker room in a coma. K-State drove 60 yards in 13 plays before settling for a FG to pull within 21-13. Then after a penalty nullified a 1st down, resulting in the Bears' first three-and-out possession of the season, their punt was blocked. K-State went 19 yards in 2 plays to make it 21-19. Then the Bears fumbled on the 2nd play of their next drive. The Wildcats cashed that in too, driving 44 yards in 10 plays to take a 25-21 lead. In that game two years ago K-State didn't take the lead until late in the 4th quarter; but this time there was still the whole 4th quarter to go.

At that point the Wildcats had all the momentum, but it took just one play to change the momentum. After the Bears ran the ball on 4 straight plays, the K-State safety bit on a play-action fake on the 5th play, allowing Reese to once again get wide open deep, and his 54-yard TD catch (photos below) put Baylor back in front 28-25 with 14:33 remaining. After the teams both punted on their next drives, the Wildcats drove to the Baylor 24 - only to miss a FG attempt with 6:49 to play. And their next drive ended with a bad INT thrown by QB Daniel Sams on 2nd and 2 with 3:48 to go. The Bears cashed that in with a 5-play, 39-yard drive - all on the ground - scoring a TD with 1:16 to go to put the game out of reach.

Sams rushed for 199 yards in the game but needs to become more of a threat as a passer for the K-State offense to be more potent. Sick senior CB K.J. Morton (photo below, tackling Sams) finished with 3 tackles (2-1) and 1 PBU; but with K-State running so much, Baylor's other senior CB with dreads - Joe Williams - didn't play much. Williams had a big game against the Wildcats last year but had no stats in this one. Senior RB John Hubert, whose sick dreads you could not see because they were hidden underneath a Coach Snyder mandated oversized purple skull cap, rushed for 90 yards on 15 carries for the Wildcats, who are now 2-4. If you have a couple of minutes, you can watch the highlights of the game (from a Baylor perspective) by clicking this link: ..... With this hurdle successfully cleared, the Bears, now 5-0, figure to remain undefeated heading into November.
I remember the time many blue moons ago when my 8th grade basketball coach, sensing his team wasn't fired up enough for the 9:15 Saturday morning tipoff, doing something he had never done before. We were in a group of 6 teams - no playoffs, just a single round robin schedule - and what were expected to be the two best teams in the group were about to meet in the 2nd (or was it the 3rd?) week of the schedule. A couple of minutes before tipoff the coach interrupted our pre-game warmups, called us back into the locker room and emphatically let it be known that "THIS IS THE CHAMPIONSHIP GAME!"

That's what I was thinking about while watching Rutgers and Louisville begin Week 7 with a crucial Thursday night contest. The two teams met in Week 14 last season in a game that decided the Big East title, so I thought it was stupid for the AAC to schedule them to play so early this year. With most of the rest of the teams in the league looking more like pretenders than contenders, this very well could have been the championship game. The Cardinals started fast, slowed down, then hung on for a 24-10 home victory that improved them to 6-0. 

The game looked like it was going to be just another Louisville blowout after they scored on 3 of their first 4 possessions to take a 17-0 lead. But then the Cardinals went INT, blocked FG attempt, and fumble (by senior RB Senorise Perry) on their next three, and the Scarlet Knights closed to within 17-10. Louisville failed to score again later when star QB Teddy Bridgewater fumbled while being sacked, ending a drive that had reached the Rutgers 5-yard line with 10:06 remaining in the game. But the Cardinals' defense wouldn't let the offense lose the game.

In the final 10 minutes we were treated to sideline shots of both junior S Calvin Pryor and junior CB Terell Floyd with their helmets off - always a good thing considering how very sick their dreads are, but especially so in these cases because they both had just picked off passes. Pryor's 2nd INT of the season got the ball back for Louisville right after Bridgewater's fumble. And after the Cardinals yet again failed to cash that in (another missed FG), Floyd got his 1st INT of the season (photo below) to end Rutgers' next drive with 5:29 to play. Finally the Cardinals then went 60 yards in 5 plays - including a 42-yard run by Perry - and scored with 2:27 to go to put the game away. That big run by Perry made him the first RB this season to rush for more than 100 yards against Rutgers. 
The Louisville D held Rutgers to 240 yards, had 4 INT, and had 8 sacks, including the 7th sack of the season by junior DE Lorenzo Mauldin, who finished with 3 tackles (2-1). Floyd finished with 5 tackles (4-1). Pryor (photo below) and Perry both made the dread stars list. None of the few players with dreads for Rutgers made a big impact. Senior WR Quron Pratt had only 1 catch for 14 yards. Freshman WR Janarion Grant had no punt returns, and the longest of his 3 kickoff returns went only 14 yards. The win puts the Cardinals in the driver's seat in the AAC race ...... rumor has it they didn't stay there for long (but that's a story for next week).
Sophomore RB Tion Green was in the spotlight for Cincinnati in the AAC's Friday night game on ESPN - although you most likely didn't know he has dreads. The lack of photos of both Green and RB Hosey Williams on the UC website had been driving me crazy, but I think I've got it figured out now. Williams, the starting RB for the Bearcats prior to this week, had dreads last season when he was in junior college but is an ex-dread now. And it looked like Green was one too. Last season if you looked closely at Green from the back, you could see he might have had dreads under his helmet. But this year you see nothing there, so I figured he had cut them off. But after finally finding a video of him from earlier this season, it appears that he still has his dreads, but he's got them so severely reduced that they don't look like dreads (unless you have a close-up view). We can only hope Tion's not planning to keep his dreads this way all season - because it's no fun seeing them the way they are now. Normally #3 on the depth chart, Green carried 18 times against Temple and nearly made the dread stars list, finishing with 91 yards and scoring his 3rd and 4th TD of the season as the Bearcats won 38-20.
Talk about spoiling homecoming ...... Freshman RB Alex Collins ran 6 yards for a TD (photo above) to complete a game-opening 7-play, 64-yard drive that gave Arkansas a 7-0 lead over South Carolina ..... and then they played the rest of the game. After picking up 3 first downs on their first drive, the Razorbacks made only 4 more the rest of the afternoon, and the Gamecocks rolled to a 52-7 victory - their largest margin of victory on the road in 101 years. Junior DE Jadeveon Clowney, junior S Sharrod Golightly, and junior CB Victor Hampton all had 2 tackles (1-1) for the Gamecocks, with Hampton also getting his 2nd INT of the season (photo below). Collins finished with 69 yards rushing on 10 carries for the Razorbacks, and freshman DT Darius Philon had 4 tackles (2-2), with 3 TFL, 1 sack, and 1 FF. The Gamecocks dominated in total yards 537-248. Indeed it was a very good day for the Gamecocks because not only did they win .....
..... Georgia and Florida both lost. Undefeated Missouri (now 6-0) is the lone remaining team without a loss in the SEC East, improving to 2-0 in the league with a 41-26 road victory over Georgia - their first road win against a top 5 ranked opponent in 32 years. It also snapped the Bulldogs' 15-game home winning streak. Junior DE Markus Golden had 2 tackles (1-1), including a sack, and also had a key FR at the Tigers' 6-yard line to preserve their 28-10 lead in the 2nd quarter ..... The Bulldogs finished with a -4 turnover margin, negating their 454-375 advantage in total yards. Junior WR Chris Conley had 5 catches for 60 yards, including a 10-yard TD that brought the Dawgs to within 28-26 with 12:15 remaining in the game; but they did not score again.
At Baton Rouge Florida fell to LSU 17-6. Senior LB Lamin Barrow (photo above) had a career high 13 tackles (4-9), 1 TFL, and 1 PBU as the Tigers' D held the Gators to 240 total yards. Senior S Craig Loston tied his career high with 9 tackles (4-3) and had 1 PBU. For Florida sophomore LB Antonio Morrison had 12 tackles (1-11). The results of the day left South Carolina, Florida, and Georgia all with 1 loss in SEC play, all 1 game behind Missouri.

The good times continue to roll for Tulane. The Green Wave improved to 3-0 in CUSA West (5-2 overall) after a ridiculous 36-33 home victory over East Carolina in 3 overtimes. Well, it was ridiculous if you're an ECU fan. On drives that reached the Tulane 4, 13, 3, 2, and 9-yard line, all the Pirates had to show for it was 4 field goals. The one drive they didn't get a FG (the one to the 3-yard line) ended with a 99-yard pick 6 TD for the Green Wave on 1st down. The Pirates finished with a 543-310 advantage in total yards (with QB Shane Carden passing for a school record 480 yards) but couldn't overcome their red zone woes. Yet they stayed in the game because Tulane's offense didn't do anything either.
With starting QB Nick Montana sidelined due to a sore body ( described it as "a multitude of hits" taken in last week's game), Tulane turned to redshirt freshman Devin Powell (photo above) for his 2nd career start. The best thing you can say about his performance was that he had only 1 turnover. With dreads so long he's likely to be the starting QB on my dread all-America team, Powell went a very respectable 23 for 39 for 224 yards with 2 TD and 1 INT. Senior RB Vintavious Cooper finished with 87 yards rushing on 22 carries for ECU. His 2-yard TD run (photo below) with 1:48 remaining in the 4th quarter tied the game at 19 and was the 1st offensive TD of the afternoon. The Pirates got the ball back with 1:21 to play but missed a 42-yard FG on the last play, sending the game into overtime, where .....
..... the offenses suddenly became unstoppable. ECU scored a TD. Then Powell tossed his 2 TD passes to give Tulane the lead. Cooper's 2nd 2-yard TD run tied it at 33. In the 3rd OT, the Pirates missed a FG on their possession, and the Green Wave immediately kicked a 42-yard FG on the first play of their possession to win it. Sophomore S Darion Monroe had 10 tackles (9-1), 2 TFL, and 1 sack for Tulane; and junior DE Andre Robinson had 2 tackles (1-1), both of which were TFL, including 1 sack. For the Pirates senior LB Derrell Johnson had 4 tackles (0-4), including a half TFL. Sophomore DE Terrell Stanley had 3 tackles (1-2), 1.5 TFL, and 1 PBU. Freshman WR Davon Grayson (who at 6-foot-2 might have been able to help solve those red zone problems) unfortunately injured his knee in the 1st quarter and will miss the rest of this season. 

Look who's 2-0 in the AAC (besides Louisville) - the South Florida Bulls. What?!? Winless and seemingly clueless in their first 4 games, the Bulls took their 2nd straight in AAC play, winning at Connecticut 13-10. But before you start saving money for those Orange Bowl tickets, Bulls fans, please note that a team cannot continue to live on non-offensive touchdowns alone. That's right, the Bulls have won these 2 games without a single TD by their lousy offense. In this game the Bulls' offense gained all of 228 total yards. A drive in the 2nd quarter lasted 15 plays and yet ended with a punt because they never made it into FG range. That's almost impossible to do. Playing without their #1 QB and #1 RB (due to injuries), the Bulls moved the ball just enough to get 2 FGs. That plus a 44-yard scoop and score by the defense was enough to beat UConn, which is now 0-5.
According to the roster on the USF website, there are 16 players with dreads on the team this season. Two of them - a couple of rarely used RBs - played leading (if not starring) roles for the offense. Freshman Darius Tice (photo above) rushed for 69 yards on 11 carries; and sophomore Willie Davis contributed 38 yards on 8 carries. Tice had a 27-yard run on the Bulls' FG drive that tied the game at 10 in the 2nd quarter and had 32 of the 65 yards on the drive that ended with the game-winning FG with 4:03 to play. Before that drive, which used up half of the time in the 4th quarter, the Bulls punted on their first 5 possessions of the 2nd half.
The scoop and score came as a result of a sack and strip by senior DE Ryne Giddins (photo above), whose on-again, off-again dreads are on again this season (I think he's on his 3rd edition of dreads). Giddins finished with 3 tackles (1-2); and senior CB Fidel Montgomery had 10 tackles (2-8). Junior WR Geremy Davis had 6 catches for 80 yards for the Huskies, who evidently are in even worse shape than USF. 0-12 is a real possibility. 

Look who else is 2-0 in the AAC - the Houston Cougars; junior DE Trevor Harris had 6 tackles (2-4), including a key sack on 3rd down in the 4th quarter, and sophomore S Trevon Stewart had 5 tackles (3-2), 1 PBU, and a FF and FR on the same play (photo on left) in the 4th quarter as UH improved to 5-0 overall with a 25-15 home win over Memphis ..... Freshman RB Altee Tenpenny scored his 1st TD in an Alabama uniform on a 7-yard run for the final points of the game as the Crimson Tide improved to 6-0 with a 48-7 win at Kentucky ..... Junior WR Bradley Marquez had 6 catches for 50 yards and his 5th TD of the season as Texas Tech improved to 6-0 with a 42-35 home win over Iowa State; junior WR Jarvis West had a 95-yard kickoff return to the house for ISU ..... Junior WR Courtney Williams had 5 catches for 43 yards, including a 5-yard reception for the game-winning TD with 22 seconds remaining for Central Michigan in a 26-23 road win over Ohio .....
Freshman WR Tony Stevens had 3 catches for 43 yards, including a 22-yarder for his 1st TD in an Auburn uniform in a 62-3 blowout of Western Carolina ..... Junior CB Steven Nelson had a game high 9 tackles (6-3), 1 PBU, and his 5th INT of the season for Oregon State, which went on a 28-0 run in the 4th quarter to win at Washington State 52-24 ..... Senior WR Devon Smith took a punt return 77 yards to the house in the 2nd quarter and had a 35-yard reception late in the 4th quarter (photo on right, against coverage by sophomore CB Cre'Von LeBlanc) to move the ball into range for the game-winning FG for Marshall in a 24-23 road win over FAU; junior LB Jermaine Holmes had 8 tackles (7-1) and his 1st INT of the season for the Thundering Herd ..... Senior DE Davon Coleman had 4 tackles (2-2), 2.5 TFL, and a half sack for a safety on defense, and had a 1-yard catch for his 1st career TD on offense for Arizona State in a 54-13 home win over Colorado ..... Senior S Marqueston Huff had 10 tackles (8-2) and a FR in the red zone for Wyoming in a 38-31 home win over New Mexico ..... Sophomore RB Travis Greene (photo on left) (15 carries for 99 yards) needed 1 more yard to make the dread stars list and 2 more points for the win as Bowling Green lost a tough one on the road 21-20 to Mississippi State ..... And junior RB Darrin Reaves rushed for 43 yards and 2 TD, senior LB D.J. White had a team high 10 tackles (8-2), and junior CB Jimmy Jean got his 2nd INT of the season in the end zone on a 3rd and goal play as UAB won a tough one at FIU 27-24.


If TFL's are your thing, I hope you saw the OVC battle between Tennessee State and Jacksonville State (it wasn't televised). There were 25 tackles for loss in the game, 14 of them by the defense ranked #1 (statistically) in the FCS - that being Tennessee State. On their Week 8 visit to JSU last season the Tigers' undefeated season came to an end. This year, same place, the Tigers got revenge, improving to 6-1 (3-0 in the OVC) with a satisfying 31-15 victory that spoiled JSU's homecoming. The Gamecocks dropped to 5-2, 1-2. Averaging 243 rushing yards per game, JSU was a held to a humbling 21 yards on 34 carries. In all JSU gained 292 total yards, 174 below their average.

I wasn't able to save any of the photos I saw of the game; but it sure looks like the dreads are flowing again at TSU (after it seemed like everybody had reduced dreads last year). If so, the Tigers will have at least three candidates for the dread all-America team. One of them was a key contributor to the this victory, as senior TE Wesley Samuels had TD catches of 13 and 10 yards, one of them being the last highlight in the video (link below) of a few of the game's highlights.
JSU is no stranger to dreads either. There were 5 players with dreads starting for the Gamecocks' defense. The most productive of those in this game were junior S Pierre Warren, who had a game high 10 tackles (9-1); sophomore S Brandon Bender, who finished with 7 tackles (7-0) and 2 PBU; and junior DT Sean Watson (5 tackles (3-2), 2 TFL). Last season's loss to JSU sent TSU into a tailspin that dropped them out of playoff consideration. They figure to do a lot better this year, but the big test will be in Week 9, when Eastern Illinois comes to Nashville.
I just couldn't do it ...... Murray State sophomore QB Maikhail Miller certainly had enough yards to be on the dread stars list. He rushed for 63 yards and 1 TD and passed for 292 yards and 3 TD against Southeast Missouri State. But I just can't put him on the list. The 2 INT he threw I can live with, especially when you throw 45 passes. But it was that other turnover that cost him. With the Racers needing only a FG to win in the 2nd overtime, Maikhail fumbled the ball away at the 5-yard line on a run that would have picked up a 1st down. When you blow a chance like that, you don't deserve to win, and the Racers didn't, losing on a FG in the 3rd OT 37-34. Miller, the transfer from Mississippi, figures to continue to have strong performances this season and is looking like a lock to be the starting QB on the 2013 all-America with dreads team. But this one had to sting, because it hurts when you're so close to winning but can't finish the job. 
In the Missouri Valley the team with the best dreads by far is Southern Illinois. Watching their season opener against Illinois, I noticed no fewer than 5 players with sick dreads. But evidently this is more than just another team with a lot of great dreads. The Salukis might be playoff bound if they keep this up. They followed up last week's road win over South Dakota State with another road win over a top 10 opponent, winning 24-17 in OT over #4 Northern Iowa. The win improves SIU to 4-3, 2-1 in the MVFC. SIU dominated in total yards 451-235, but a 79-yard pick 6 by UNI kept SIU from extending their 14-0 lead. And then at the end of the 4th quarter the Salukis missed a chip shot 29-yard FG that would have won the game.
Despite those disappointments, the Salukis would not be denied. After scoring a TD to take the lead, SIU clinched the win when senior LB Bryan Presume stopped UNI RB David Johnson for no gain on 4th and 1. Presume finished with 8 tackles (8-0). Sick sophomore S D.J.Cameron had 1 tackle (1-0), and sick junior RB Tay Willis gained 63 total yards on 8 touches. Junior DT Xavier Williams (if you look carefully, you can see the dreads in photo above) had 11 tackles (8-3) for UNI. Having disposed of SDSU and UNI, now let's see how SIU does against the champs - North Dakota State comes to Carbondale in Week 8.
Sophomore WR Jamal Abdur-Rahman rushed for 36 yards and had 6 catches for 89 yards, and junior LB Joey Harmon had 5 tackles (1-4) and his 1st INT of the season as Villanova improved to 3-0 in the CAA, winning at #3 Towson 45-35 ..... Senior WR Rob Jones had a 71-yard TD run and a late 4th quarter 20-yard TD catch that allowed Delaware to tie the game (with a 2-point conversion) with 1:42 to play, and moments later the Blue Hens kicked a FG on the last play of the game to defeat Albany 33-30 ..... Sophomore RB Shepard Little rushed for 68 yards and 1 TD and had a 43-yard TD catch as Eastern Illinois improved to 5-1 with a 63-7 blowout of Austin Peay ..... Junior CB Denzel Rice had 8 tackles (8-0), 1 TFL, and his 1st INT of the season as Coastal Carolina improved to 6-0 with a 42-7 home win over Gardner-Webb ..... Sophomore S Naim Cheeseboro took an INT return 52 yards to the house for Stony Brook's 1st pick 6 in 4 years in a 27-3 road win over Colgate .....
Junior CB Terry Johnson had 4 tackles (4-0), 1 sack, 2 PBU, and took a punt return 63 yards to the house (left and right photos) as FAMU ended a 4-game losing streak with a 27-14 road win over Savannah State; freshman LB Marquis Smith had 9 tackles (5-4), 2 TFL, and a 46-yard pick 6 for SSU ..... Freshman DE James Robinson had 3 tackles (3-0), all 3 of which were TFL, including 1 sack, to help South Carolina State hold North Carolina Central to only 105 total yards in a 44-3 road win for SCSU ..... Junior LB Bishop Neal took a fumble return on the opening kickoff 8 yards to the house and finished with 4 tackles (3-1) and 1.5 TFL; and junior WR Terrell Smith had an 18-yard reception for his 2nd TD of the season for St. Francis (PA) in a 28-10 home win over Monmouth ..... Senior WR Jordan Harris almost made the dread stars list, finishing with 6 catches for 92 yards along with 4 tackles (3-1) and 1 FF on special teams, but Bryant lost at home to Brown 41-14 .....
Senior RB Antwon Chisholm had 66 yards rushing and a 12-yard reception for his 4th TD catch of the season to help Hampton to a 31-26 homecoming win over North Carolina A&T ..... Senior RB Isidore Jackson (photo on right) rushed for 65 yards and his 1st TD of the season , junior RB Anthony Jordan rushed for his 4th and 5th TD of the season, and junior LB Tavarus Dantzler had 3 TFL for Bethune-Cookman in a 27-6 road win over Howard ..... Sick senior CB Tremaine Shepherd got his 2nd and 3rd INT of the season, but Alabama A&M dropped a tough one at Southern 20-17 in OT ..... And junior CB Hendrick Taylor had 4 tackles (2-2), 2.5 TFL, 1 PBU, and his 1st INT of the season for Alcorn State as the Braves blasted Grambling 48-0; junior LB Steve Orisakwe had a game high 15 tackles (9-6), 1.5 TFL, and 1 PBU for GSU.    

I almost wanted to cry.
That was my reaction after reading the recap of the Troy at Georgia State game. Not because of what happened, but because I missed what happened. I had the game on the list of several games starting at 2:30 PM that I wanted to watch. But I never got around to turning it on. And so I did not see any part of the best game in the career of Troy senior WR Chris Williams. A 2nd team selection on my dread all-America team last season, Williams' awesome dreads are looking good to make 1st team this year.

Usually not on the field for very many snaps, Chris was in the starting lineup last Saturday, replacing an injured teammate. And he took full advantage of the opportunity, making the dread stars list for the first time and scoring his 1st TD since he was a freshman at Mississippi Valley State in 2009. His 54-yard catch and run with 3:17 remaining in the game was the winning TD in the Trojans' 35-28 victory over Georgia State.

I found it strange when Williams transferred from MVSU to Troy following his sophomore season. I mean, if you're good enough to play at the FBS level, what were you doing playing in the SWAC. Well, now I know why - the reason was financial. Thanks to his big game, the Dothan Eagle did a story on him a couple of days ago (link below). Hopefully this is the start to a strong finish to his career, a finish that hopefully will propel him to a pro football career somewhere. No doubt Chris needs to play football for a living - because I don't imagine there are a lot of other good-paying jobs out there where they let you have dreadlocks like his.


1. Missouri junior DE Markus Golden sacks Georgia QB Aaron Murray for a loss of 6 on 3rd and 6 midway through 4th quarter at Athens with Tigers leading by 8, forcing a punt on the next play. Golden had 1 other tackle in the game and a big FR also, helping Missouri improve 6-0 with a 41-26 upset of Georgia. 

2. CB Kendall Fuller makes the tackle, but not until junior TE Manasseh Garner converts a 3rd and 8 with a 10-yard reception to the Pittsburgh 29-yard line early in 2nd quarter at Blacksburg, VA. The drive ended with a punt 6 plays later. Garner, a Pittsburgh native who transferred back home after playing two seasons at Wisconsin, had 2 catches for 17 yards in the Panthers' 19-9 road loss to Virginia Tech. 

3. Even in a 59-point slaughter, there can be a highlight or two for Western Carolina. Here freshman CB Fred Payne gets his 1st career INT, picking off a deep pass intended for WR Ricardo Louis during 2nd quarter at Auburn. It was the only stat of the game for Payne, who according to the WCU website is a cousin of Tennessee LB A.J. Johnson. WCU fell to 1-6, losing to Auburn 62-3.

4. Massachusetts senior S Devin Brown brings in a deflected pass for his 2nd INT of the season midway through 4th quarter at Foxboro, a key turnover on the first play after a bad punt gave Miami (Ohio) good field position near midfield. Brown finished with 7 tackles (5-2) and 1 PBU in addition to his pick. And he got the win! In a battle, or should I say struggle, of two 0-5 teams, UMass defeated Miami 17-10.

5. Senior WR Brandon Felder of Penn State (yes, Penn State) makes a 24-yard TD catch on 3rd and 10 against coverage by Michigan CB Courtney Avery, increasing Nittany Lions' lead to 21-10 midway through 2nd quarter. It was Felder's 2nd TD of the game and 2nd of the season. In my more than 5 years of doing this blog, I don't recall anyone from Penn State ever making the dread stars list. It almost happened this week. Felder, who had his hair in braids prior to this season, was 3 yards short, finishing with 6 catches for 97 yards as Penn State handed the Wolverines their 1st defeat of the season, 43-40 in 4 overtimes.

6. Senior RB SaDale Foster of Texas Tech eludes a diving tackle attempt by CB Deon Broomfield at the 10-yard line and takes it to the house for a 38-yard TD run, giving the Red Raiders a 42-28 lead over Iowa State with 5:30 remaining at Lubbock. It was Foster's 1st TD of the season. SaDale nearly made the dread stars list, finishing with a season high 87 yards rushing on 9 carries and 2 catches for 17 yards. Texas Tech improved to 6-0 with the 42-35 victory. 

7. Senior CB Jason Verrett has great coverage but somehow fails to break up this deep pass, and Kansas WR Andrew Turzilli makes the catch for a 50-yard gain to the TCU 25 during 2nd quarter at Ft. Worth. Jason made up for this play, as three plays later he got his 1st INT (finally) of the season. He finished the day with 2 tackles (2-0) and 1 PBU, as TCU picked up their 1st Big 12 win, 27-17 over Kansas. 


8. Sophomore WR Marcus Johnson beats CB Kass Everett deep, makes the catch and takes it to the house for a 59-yard TD on 3rd and 11, increasing Texas' lead over Oklahoma to 17-3 midway through 2nd quarter at Dallas. It was Johnson's 1st career TD and his only reception of the day. Texas improved to 3-0 in the Big 12 and dealt the Sooners' their 1st loss of the season, 36-20.


9. Sick senior LB Raheem Cardwell of Prairie View A&M brings down Alabama State WR Nehemiah Henry after a 17-yard reception that converted  a 1st and 15 during 2nd quarter at Montgomery. The drive ended with a TD 8 plays later, tying the game at 14. It was another busy day for Cardwell, who currently is 3rd in the SWAC in tackles. He finished with 15 tackles (7-8), including 1 TFL.


10. Junior RB Isaiah Crowell leaves S David Metcalf behind and races 33 yards to the house, tying the game at 7 with 9:50 remaining in 1st quarter. Unfortunately Crowell injured his ankle the next time he carried the ball and finished with 51 yards and 2 TD on 7 carries, missing out on a chance to put up big numbers against PVAMU's porous defense. Alabama State improved to 5-2 with a thrilling 48-42 win in OT. 


  • Melvin Gordon - Wisconsin - 22 carries for 172 yards rushing, including 71-yard TD, in 35-6 homecoming W over Northwestern
  • Julian Jones - Arkansas State - 4 receptions for 135 yards and 1 TD in 48-24 home W over Idaho
  • Chris Williams - Troy - 4 receptions for career high 152 yards, including 54-yard game-winning TD, in 35-28 road W over Georgia State
  • Tevin Reese - Baylor - 5 receptions for career high 184 yards, including TDs of 93 and 54 yards, in 35-25 road W over Kansas State
  •  Sammy Watkins - Clemson - 7 receptions for 101 yards, including 48-yard TD, in 24-14 home W over Boston College

    Calvin Pryor - Louisville - named AAC defensive player of the week - career high 14 tackles (11-3), 1 TFL, and 1 INT in 24-10 home W over Rutgers

    Senorise Perry - Louisville - 13 carries for 104 yards and 1 TD rushing as Cardinals improve to 6-0


  •  Jay Ajayi - Boise State - 22 carries for 109 yards rushing and 1 TD in 34-23 road W over Utah State
  • Tre Mason - Auburn - 100 yards and 2 TD rushing on only 6 carries in 62-3 rout of Western Carolina - Auburn gained school record 712 total yards

  •  Vintavious Cooper - East Carolina - 87 yards and 2 TD rushing on 22 carries, and 6 receptions for 84 yards in 36-33 road L in 3 OT to Tulane
  • James Baker - Idaho - 23 carries for 150 yards rushing and 2 TD in 48-24 L at Arkansas State
  • Travis Reynolds - Utah State - 5 receptions for career high 142 yards in 34-23 home L to Boise State
  • Marcus Washington - Nicholls State - 23 carries for 77 yards and 3 TD rushing, and 2 receptions for 16 yards in 33-21 home W over Northwestern State - sadly, it was last game for Washington, a senior, as he suffered season-ending knee injury in 4th quarter
  • Leland Baker - Alabama State - named SWAC defensive player of the week - career high 17 tackles (8-9), 3.5 TFL, and 1.5 sacks in 48-42 home W over Prairie View A&M in OT
  •  Gus Johnson - Stephen F. Austin - 21 carries for 106 yards and 1 TD rushing, 1 reception for 16 yards in 56-14 road L to Southeastern Louisiana
  • Julian Burton - Missouri State - 6 receptions for 128 yards, including 65-yard TD, in 41-26 road L to North Dakota State
  • Daniel Taylor - Northwestern State - 8 carries for 102 yards and 1 TD rushing in 33-21 L at Nicholls State

No tie this week. Several games had 4 TD by players with dreads, but only one had 5. So the Week 7 HOD is the end zone at Liberty Bank Stadium in Jonesboro, AR. Arkansas State defeated Idaho 48-24, and 3 players accounted for the 5 TD. Senior RB and dread star James Baker scored on TD runs of 1 and 4 yards for Idaho. Senior WR and dread star Julian Jones had an 80-yard TD catch on ASU's first offensive snap of the game. And sophomore WR J.D.McKissic (9 catches for 80 yards) had a 13-yard TD catch (photo) and scored on a 98-yard kickoff return.  

He wasn't the sidekick this time.
It started out looking like it was going to be the usual for reserve RB Malcolm Cyrus. So far this season Cyrus, a junior for Alabama State, has enjoyed good success but in a minor role, as star RB Isaiah Crowell has gotten the majority of the carries for the Hornets. And Crowell was off to a great start last Saturday, gaining 39 yards on his first 2 carries. But when he went down with a sprained ankle on his 3rd carry, it was Malcolm's time to shine. And did he ever, finishing the afternoon with a THREE HUNDRED yard game as ASU won a shootout over Prairie View A&M 48-42 in overtime.
In a game where both team gained more than 630 yards, Cyrus was the player with he most, earning SWAC co-offensive player of the week honors after rushing 24 times for a career high 241 yards and 2 TD and catching 4 passes for 60 yards. His 80-yard TD run in the 3rd quarter, giving ASU a 28-21 lead, was the longest run of his career. The 28 touches were his most ever, so it's not surprising that he had to leave the game for a while with leg cramps in the 4th quarter (bottom photo). But he was back in the game during overtime, and his 7-yard TD run (after PVAMU missed a FG attempt on their possession) was the game winner. Nice going, Malcolm. You and Isaiah, go ahead and keep trying to prove me wrong by keeping ASU as the Division 1 team with the most TD by players with dreads again this season.


Week 8 is all about Florida State at Clemson. But I'll also try to check out Texas Tech-West Virginia, North Dakota State-Southern Illinois, Auburn-Texas A&M, LSU-Mississippi, Iowa State-Baylor, ODU-Pittsburgh, and Wisconsin-Illinois.

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